by baldilocks

There was a time – during the Old West period, at least according to the movies — when interrupting a meal would result in lead poisoning for the interrupter. I’m glad those days are over, but as with all good things, there are side effects.

My parents didn’t answer the phone during the dinner hour and, even now, I won’t call anyone between seven and eight-thirty in the evening unless they request it. But it appears that attitude is an anachronism.

The fact that the state frowns on summary execution of the rude plus the general decline in old-school manners has had a cumulative effect.

When Barack Obama was President, we saw “Black Brunch” activists protest the “whiteness” of New York City brunch crowds by hover over the tables of the latter.

Now that Donald Trump is President, we have members of his administration being harassed and tossed out of restaurants, including the latest one, EPA administrator Scott Pruitt.

And, for tomorrow, Independence Day, this is planned:

In Raleigh and Durham, North Carolina, social justice activists are telling their followers to boycott the Fourth of July this year, not to buy hot dogs or fireworks, and even to crash other people’s cookouts. They say they refuse to celebrate until America addresses what they see as endemic racism; one referred to the current climate as “Trump terror.”

Durham minister and activist Paul Scott, who has reiterated his call to boycott the Fourth for weeks, said, “I hope it’s going to start a chain reaction.” (…)

Scott was echoed in Raleigh at a meeting of social justice advocates by community activist Diana Powell, who opined, “This is something that everybody can participate in.” Before the meeting, Powell stated on Facebook Live, “We want to know what your address is — because we’re gonna be crashing cookouts that day.”

Emphasis mine.

Unfortunately, I’m too far away – 3000 miles – to trail these geniuses to see what the response will be when they crash NC ritual grillings of meat. People take their barbecue celebrations seriously, especially on July 4th. I could use some schadenfreude-borne entertainment.

Seriously though, who thinks that people like these North Carolina activists are biting off more than they will be able chew — no pun intended?

There’s something completely uncivilized about interrupting a meal for any non-emergency reason, much less to harass strangers about their politics. It feels like an invasion of one’s being, which is probable why it was punished so harshly in the Wild West.

If this sort of thing expands, as it appears to be doing, someone is going to revert to the ways of the Old West. And I’m under no illusion that these activists thought up the cookout invasion plan themselves. Whoever put them up to it  is counting on some escalation of violence.

My advice: leave people alone when they’re eating. Or just leave people alone, period.

But we all know that the Left wouldn’t be the Left, if they weren’t constantly veering into a lane not their own.

Juliette Akinyi Ochieng has been blogging since 2003 as baldilocks. Her older blog is here.  She published her first novel, Tale of the Tigers: Love is Not a Game in 2012.

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by baldilocks

I just spent more minutes than I should have arguing with a Twitter-bot about Jesus the Christ, so I’m a little late today. (Sorry, Peter.) As an excuse In my defense, I do like to keep my arguing skills up and hadn’t done it in while. It’s like riding a bicycle!

Anyway, like many, I’m watching the rise of young Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, an avowed Marxist, and the NY-14 Democrat candidate for Congress. Since I’m late, I’ll give you a slice of what the Victory Girls Blog has to say about this ascendant Red Star.

First, lets dispel the myth that Ocasio is somehow your typical Bronx girl. She’s far from it. According to Wikipedia, the community organizer (oh, Great Cthulhu, save us from another one of those!) was born in the Bronx and lived there until the age of five, when her architect daddy moved the family to a “house in Yorktown Heights, an affluent suburb in Westchester County, where she would live until she left home to attend college.”

Where did she attend college, you ask? Why Boston University, of course, where the cost of attendance per year for an out of state student is an oh-so-modest $70,300 per year.

Yeah, she’s sure an everyday working girl from the Bronx (…)

After college, she worked as a waitress and bartender in the Bronx for a bit while she and her mother fought a probate battle for her father’s estate after he died of cancer. This was a second job in addition to her position as Educational Director for a Hispanic nonprofit. Now, I don’t know how much her salary was, but for someone straight out of college to be making an average of $61,000 per year is pretty damn good.

Alexandria is a smart girl. She doesn’t mention that she grew up in an affluent New York suburb or that she snagged herself a directorship position straight out of college with a fairly significant nonprofit organization. She doesn’t want the voters to see her exactly for who she is: a privileged phony, who is just another politician fighting to suck on the government teat, earning a $174,000 salary, while pointing a government gun at the taxpayers and using force to implement her schemes.

Read the whole thing and recognize the pattern. In every Marxist-based society, there is a ruling social and/or political elite. This lady has been shooting for that target since she was old enough to know that the target existed. I do like her openness and she will probably be elected in Soviet NYC.

Fascinating. /Spock voice

(Thanks to Darleen Click)

Juliette Akinyi Ochieng has been blogging since 2003 as baldilocks. Her older blog is here.  She published her first novel, Tale of the Tigers: Love is Not a Game in 2012.

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Sow the wind …

by baldilocks

#MeToo

What is the relationship between complete disarmament of the entire American populace, open borders, and opposition to the so-call Muslim ban?

Mexico is a nightmare of a nation-state, totally controlled by the demonic drug and human-trafficking cartels. The operational activities of these cartels rivals those of ISIS. Mexico’s murder rate is number two in the world. And 99% of all Mexican crimes go unadjudicated and uninvestigated. Our sieve-like southern border has allowed all of this to spill into this country, but there is still some control.

As I’ve point out before, the cartels are probably salivating at the “business” opportunities which a disarmed America would offer.

Open borders plus disarmed America equals the end of a free America and sets the stage for a true strongman who promise to protect the remnant of a terrified populace ravaged by savage murders, rapes, robberies, etc. Gangs of these animals roaming the countryside, armed to the teeth and scoffing at the enforcers who would presume to disarm them.

As my friend, Dave Perkins, points out, “The pattern is historical.”

Then there is the violence and harassment against Republican and conservative officials, including:

  • Attempted murder of several Republican congressmen, including the critically-injured Rep. Steven Scalise.
  • Senator Rand Paul severely injured by his neighbor.
  • DHS Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen run out of a DC restaurant.
  • Pam Bondi, Florida Attorney General, run out of Tampa movie theater.
  • White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders and family asked to leave a Virginia restaurant, and, after the family choose another restaurant, the management follows them to that place to harass them further.

Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA) openly exhorts others to harass Trump cabinet members with implications of violence.

“You think we’re rallying now? You ain’t seen nothing yet,” Waters vowed at a Los Angeles rally on Saturday. “If you see anybody from that cabinet in a restaurant, in a department store, at a gasoline station, you get out and you create a crowd, and you push back on them, and you tell them they’re not welcome anymore, anywhere.”

Apparently, some were listening to Rep. Waters. Just today, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and his wife, Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao, were harassed by a mob in front of their home.

Waters set the stage for harassment and violence not only against Trump administration cabinet members and staff, but also against the normal, every-day citizen whose attitude might need adjustment. The mob will always expand its choice of targets.

Even Nancy Pelosi realizes this and told Waters to STFU. Good luck with that, Madame Minority Leader.

Then, there is also the fact that, today, the Supreme Court upheld the so-called Muslim ban list– actually a list of countries who have no process of identifying its citizens. Most of the countries with majority Muslim populations are not on the banned list and two of the countries on the list – Venezuela and North Korea – are not majority Muslim. But those who remain outraged by the ban don’t care about this because holding onto the lie and repeating the lie that the ban discriminates against Muslims is a necessity.

“A necessity for what,” I hear you ask. And here comes the answer to the first question.

All of these Democrat, leftist (BIRM) advocacies are intended to wear out the American public with chaos. Leftists want us to be overrun by criminals and terrorists and to have no defense against them. They want chaos and what produces chaos better than violence, death and fear of death? Sure, they pretend that it’s heartless to keep out citizens of failed states like Mexico or Somalia, but, in reality, they want America to become the failed state.

But their daddy issues will remain.

Juliette Akinyi Ochieng has been blogging since 2003 as baldilocks. Her older blog is here.  She published her first novel, Tale of the Tigers: Love is Not a Game in 2012.

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by baldilocks

Don’t call it a comeback

The latest in political delineation news is that White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders was refused service at Red Hen Restaurant in Lexington, Virginia. Sanders merely reported it and said that she and her family complied and left.

And this is fair. As Peter pointed out, restaurants and other businesses claim that they have the right to refuse service to anyone for any reason. But we all know that this not the truth. Pizza parlors and bakeries have been legally driven out of business for refusing to do business with potential customers for various reasons, mostly involving Christianity and same-sex marriage.

Recall what I said about this a few years back while commemorating the 50th anniversary of the Civil Rights Act. Bottom line: I don’t think segregation of any type should be outlawed for privately owned businesses; nor should integration be forced.

This applies to race, but a business owner should also be able to refuse to serve those whose politics, person or breath he/she doesn’t like. I suspect that Sanders thinks this way, too.

And, of course, private citizens are already pranking the place: calling in reservations and not showing up. Silliness.

More silliness: the resultant Yelp review battles.

Some are blaming this on Sanders for even mentioning the incident; for “targeting” the business.

Please. The employee who turned Sanders away targeted the business herself, not to mention targeting other unaffiliated Red Hen restaurants whose owners are now having to disavow Red Hen Lexington. Did the RHL employee expect one of the most visible women in the country to keep the snub to herself?

So it is that Democrats are bringing back their old friend, restaurant segregation.

Are these the new old rules?

However, this is actually how freedom is supposed to work: a business owner is free to refuse service to anyone – including conservatives, women, blacks, homosexuals, and Trump employees — and, after discovering a business’s preference, the rest of us are free to steer clear of that business. Or to give it our money. Or open up a competing business across the street with different rules of service.

And now that we are once again reminded that some business owners do not want the business of conservatives/Republicans in general and Trump supporters/employees in particular, each one of us should decide to act accordingly.

They’re free to choose. So are you.

And to remember.

Juliette Akinyi Ochieng has been blogging since 2003 as baldilocks. Her older blog is here.  She published her first novel, Tale of the Tigers: Love is Not a Game in 2012.

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by baldilocks

Folks keep telling me that Jesus the Christ would never separate family members. Really?

34 Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword.

35 For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law.

36 And a man’s foes shall be they of his own household.

37 He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.

— Matthew 10:34-37

31 When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon

 the throne of his glory:

32 And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats:

33 And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left

— Matthew 25:31-33

Then there’s the Parable of the Wheat and the Tares in Matthew 13.

Whenever someone talks about Jesus the Christ allegedly not being in favor of separating family members, regardless of the context, that person unwittingly reveals that she is using a false Jesus to make her point.

And the only point she’s reaching for is this one:

To shame you into changing your opinion or into shutting up. It’s another revelation – no pun intended.

Those of us who have read, reread, studied, meditated on, and applied the Word of God to our lives are mostly immune to these attempts at shame. I, for one, laugh at them.

If we Christians have one criterion to get to God and be with Him forever in the next life – submitting to Jesus the Christ and Lord and Savior – then God is our sole audience and whatever we think and do is for His perusal and judgment and His alone.

Others can guess for themselves whether another person belongs to Christ or not, but there is an objective yardstick with which to measure that ownership. (And, yes, if you are a Christian, then Christ owns your carcass and that which is contained therein.)

Anyway, I cannot find an explicit or implicit indication of this rah-rah Team Jesus, phantom Uniter-not-a-Divider that people keep conjuring. Therefore, when others use this Figment Jesus to point their grubby fingers at you in accusation, their opinions and conclusions about the “quality” of your Christianity are worthless.

But you knew that already.

Juliette Akinyi Ochieng has been blogging since 2003 as baldilocks. Her older blog is here.  She published her first novel, Tale of the Tigers: Love is Not a Game in 2012.

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Example of a five second reckless eyeballing at a workplace.

by baldilocks

This definitely isn’t about camping out in the lane or picking up food off the floor and eating it.

Netflix has reportedly banned workers from looking at each other for more than five seconds as part of its new anti-harassment rules.

The new policy also bans the company’s film crews from asking their colleagues for their phone numbers, according to an article in the Sun.

“Senior staff went to a harassment meeting to learn what is and isn’t appropriate,” an on-set runner told the Sun. “Looking at anyone longer than five seconds is considered creepy.”

“You mustn’t ask for someone’s number unless they have given permission for it to be distributed,” the source continued. “And if you see any unwanted behaviour, report it immediately.”

Other new rules include: “Don’t give lingering hugs or touch anyone for a lengthy period of time,” “Don’t ask out a colleague more than once if they have said no,” “Steer clear of a colleague once they have said they are not interested in you,” and “Don’t flirt.” The rules also encourage employees to “Shout ‘Stop, don’t do that again!’ if a colleague has been inappropriate.” (…)

Netflix hasn’t confirmed or denied the new rules, but did release a statement to the Independent, saying: “We’re proud of the anti-harassment training we offer to our productions. We want every Netflix production to be a safe and respectful working environment. We believe the resources we offer empower people on our sets to speak up, and shouldn’t be trivialized.”

Back in the day, the “five second rule” was called reckless eyeballing.

Honestly, who can blame Netflix for trying to save themselves some potential sexual harassment settlement money?

People have long used the workplace as a playground. I’m not judging this, but if an employer wants its employees to minimize the playing of grab*ss and get those DVDs in the mail, I can’t judge that either.

If you ask me, Netflix sounds like a good candidate for automation.

Now about that Obama contract, Netflix …

Never mind, I don’t have an account.

Juliette Akinyi Ochieng has been blogging since 2003 as baldilocks. Her older blog is here.  She published her first novel, Tale of the Tigers: Love is Not a Game in 2012.

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Your attention span after smoking the Social Media pipe.

by baldilocks

From our beloved Mr. Reynolds:

I think a lot about whether social media are good or bad for society. I’ve written about how they make it easier for people to form mobs, facilitate the weaponization of emotion, and allow bad ideas to spread like disease through early civilizations.

But I also have to wonder: Are social media bad for our brains? (…)

Of course, this isn’t the first time that technology has changed people’s mental processes. Preliterate people had a lot less access to knowledge than people who can read — but preliterate people tended to have amazing memories by today’s standards. (…)

Now, of course, actual bound books are fading, and people read much more on screens. As a result they tend to multitask — read something for a bit, check email, go to see whether you’ve gotten any “likes” on Facebook, go back to reading for a bit, check Twitter. And social media tend to make that worse by subjecting users to a vast stream of bite-size it. (…)

Deep thinking is becoming less common, and worse, this seems to be particularly true among the academic/political/intellectual class that’s most on Twitter.

Glenn says he doesn’t have a solution to this. I do, but it takes personal will.

I, too, found that too much Social Media was harmful to my concentration process. It was taking me much longer to finish reading books than it used to; sometimes I wouldn’t finish them at all since I frequently use e-books and audio-books downloaded from the LA Public Library. Another symptom is pervasive: many open browser tabs. And this is the worst: the degeneration of my ability to concentrate enough on an idea in order to write about it sensibly and to connect one idea with another. (Thank God that I wrote my novel before Social Media’s ascent!)

The solution is very simple: disconnect for a set and regularly scheduled time segment.

Sometimes, I devote the segment to audio-book “reading” coupled with apartment cleaning; other times to something outside of myself.

I do this about twice a week and I can see the change. Additional benefit: the times when the scatter-brained, emotional poo-flinging hits the brim — even when it’s from those with whom I usually agree – and makes me want to shut it down. Call it a sign of detox.

Of course, I’m paranoid enough to believe that the mass splintering of our collective attention spans is intentional.

It doesn’t have to stay that way, though. But recognizing the problem is the first step.

Juliette Akinyi Ochieng has been blogging since 2003 as baldilocks. Her older blog is here.  She published her first novel, Tale of the Tigers: Love is Not a Game in 2012.

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by baldilocks

Last week, at the request of one Kim Kardashian West, President Trump commuted the life sentence of a non-violent drug dealer Alice Marie Johnson. Johnson had served 21 years.

Now the president wants to keep the ball rolling, as it were.

I’ve been LMAO ever since I read about this yesterday.

U.S. President Donald Trump held out an olive branch in his feud with National Football League players on Friday, asking them for recommendations as he considers pardoning several thousand people who may have been unfairly treated by the criminal justice system. (…)

On Friday, speaking to reporters before leaving for a Group of Seven summit in Canada, Trump challenged those players, the majority of whom are African-American, to advise him on employing his pardon power. He said his staff was examining some 3,000 cases of people who might deserve clemency.

“I am going to ask all of those people to recommend to me, because that’s what they’re protesting – people that they think were unfairly treated by the justice system. And I understand that,” Trump said. “They’ve seen a lot of abuse and they’ve seen a lot of unfairness.”

I’m told that this is classic Art of the Deal, which I have downloaded from the LA Public Library. It’s also giving me some Ferengi Rules of Acquisition vibes. (Deep Space Nine fans will understand.)

Whatever way this plays out, this is a win-win situation for the president. And, even if no ballplayers send him a list, other prominent people probably will – a potential win for some deserving prisoners who have behaved well while paying their debt to society or for those who have been unjustly imprisoned.

But some observers are grumbling.

“His suggestion that he might bring NFL players into the pardon process must be viewed as nothing less than a cynical, self-serving ploy to create a photo op with NFL players, many of whom have made it clear that they would not be caught standing downwind from him, much less next to him,” said Harry Edwards, a sociologist and longtime civil rights activist at the University of California at Berkeley. (…)

“This is just another attempt to divert attention and, of course, it places Donald Trump as the master of everything, just appeal to me personally and I’ll let your friends out or maybe I will pardon them,” said Jeffrey Robinson, deputy legal director of the American Civil Liberties Union.

One would think that Longtime Civil Rights Activists and Venerable Civil Liberties Organizations would care more about injustice being rectified more than who gets the credit for the rectification.

Unless it was all about the Look At Me moral narcissism and preening for them – and for the pro ballplayers — in the first place.

Nah, couldn’t be that.

Snark aside, I do hope that some ballplayers have enough integrity and perspective to accept the president’s offer.

We need some healing in this country.

Juliette Akinyi Ochieng has been blogging since 2003 as baldilocks. Her older blog is here.  She published her first novel, Tale of the Tigers: Love is Not a Game in 2012.

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by baldilocks

A Feces List, if you will.

While the FBI and the various tentacles of the Intelligence Community fall under hard scrutiny for their actions during the 2016 presidential election, another security agency reaches out to get a piece of that sweet Big Brother action. Again.

Pay attention to the reminder of how the Terror Watch List works.

The Department of Homeland Security intends to list and track hundreds of thousands of news outlets, journalists, bloggers, and “influencers” in traditional and new media alike. Its plan is to analyze targets’ “sentiment,” monitor “any and all” coverage of select news stories, and possibly share data with “federal, state, local, tribal, and private partners.” (…)

DHS is surely aware media services are available, which raises the question of why it did not elect to use one. If the aim here, as Houlton claims, is “nothing more than the standard practice of monitoring” the news, why not use the standard programs to do it?

The distinction seems to be twofold. First, the DHS database is noticeably personal. It is not content with assessing the general mood on a given news story, or even the editorial stance of an entire outlet. No, the database will list individuals — “journalists, editors, correspondents, social media influencers, bloggers etc.” — including not only their contact information, employment, and beat, but “any other information that could be relevant.” Any other information. Is it so surprising this plan is anxiety-provoking for those of us who could conceivably be listed?

The second distinction is this is a government list — DHS evidently wants a proprietary database, not the rent-a-list services it could obtain more quickly and cheaply — and government lists do not have a stellar reputation. The terrorist watchlist is exemplary on this point, and reviewing its record of abuse and incompetence takes us nowhere tinfoil territory.

Officially known as the Terrorist Screening Database, the watchlist includes the no-fly list and 10 other lists and screening programs in the Departments of Justice, Defense, Treasury, and Homeland Security. It is a sprawling data monster best known for its failures, and it has exploded from fewer than 50,000 entries at the close of the Bush administration to more than 1.8 million people today. Almost 40 percent of those listed have no demonstrable ties to terrorism, and 99 percent of the names suggested for the list are accepted. Evidence as flimsy as a suspicious social media post is enough for inclusion. The removal process is slow, confusing, and secretive.

The writer of this piece reminds us that the Terrorist Watchlist has been used as a means of gun control.

They never stop trying.

President Trump’s words of contempt for the mainstream media are well documented, as the writer points out, but he/she doesn’t mention that former President Obama did more than talk critically of the press; he actually authorized DOJ surveillance of Fox News reporter James Rosen and 20 Associated Press reporters.

Watching as all our federal intelligence, security, and investigative agencies show us who they really are, it’s tempting to shut down all digital communications and go hermit. I, however, think that this would be an admission of defeat; one which would embolden them. And they’re bold enough already, are they not?

Let them listen, read, make their lists, and check them twice. I’m a retired GI; they already know who I am, and I spent eight years being a little afraid of critiquing President Obama because of my ties to him. I’m done with that.

And, while President Obama is “gone,” those who would surveil innocent Americans for exercising freedom of the press long preceded him and will keep trying to get in our business for whatever reason and no matter who is president. Each of us “influencers” has to decide whether we are up for potential of personal invasion — or worse.

Because lists like this always have an unspoken purpose.

Juliette Akinyi Ochieng has been blogging since 2003 as baldilocks. Her older blog is here.  She published her first novel, Tale of the Tigers: Love is Not a Game in 2012.

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by baldilocks

And how rare is that?

Many people cited a lone reason to vote for the presidential candidate that was Donald Trump: to keep Hillary Clinton out of the Oval Office. As it turned out, that was the sole reason that I voted for him. But there were other very good reasons.

Like this one.

Of course, we remember that the president nominated Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme court early last year to take

It’s fun to imagine Scalia giggling after facing a Higher Court.

the place of Antonin Scalia – who died in 2016. Justice Gorsuch was confirmed by the US Senate and took the oath of office last April. Conservatives seem to be pleased with his decisions so far.

But, according to the piece, the Left is afraid that all of its signature issues will be overruled by the high court – especially if President Trump gets to nominate another potential SCJ.

Republicans are working with Trump to make a record-breaking number of appointments to federal courts. These new, mostly young, white men will be in a position to rule on legislation that could change America for years.

But the most contentious appointment would be a second nomination to the highest court in the land. The supreme court has over decades delivered landmark decisions on issues from abortion to affirmative action and same-sex marriage. The potential for Trump to install another justice on the nine-seat bench, some legal experts argue, could have profound consequences on issues ranging from women’s reproductive health to LGBT rights.

With speculation mounting over the possible retirement of supreme court justice Anthony Kennedy, Trump could have a lasting impact on reshaping America’s most important court.

Honestly, I think that the worst thing that advocates of LGBT rights (translation: same-sex marriage), abortion, etc. would have to worry about is that most such issues would revert to the state legislatures where they belong. That’s why the tenth amendment exists.

But it’s always good to keep the Left afraid. Just keep your eyes open.

Juliette Akinyi Ochieng has been blogging since 2003 as baldilocks. Her older blog is here.  She published her first novel, Tale of the Tigers: Love is Not a Game in 2012.

Hit Da Tech Guy Blog’s Tip Jar for his new not-GoDaddy host!

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